October 16, 2016

Unblemished Blog Tour: Review + Giveaway


Author: Sara Ella
Publisher: Thomas Nelson/HarperCollins
Release Date: October 11, 2016
Genre: YA Fantasy

Rating: 3.5 Stars

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Eliyana has always recoiled from her own reflection in the mirror. But what if that were only one Reflection — one world? What if another world existed where her blemish could become her strength?

Eliyana is used to the shadows. With a hideous birth mark covering half her face, she just hopes to graduate high school unscathed. That is, until Joshua hops a fence and changes her perspective. No one, aside from her mother, has ever treated her as normal. Maybe even beautiful. Because of Joshua, Eliyana finally begins to believe she could be loved.

But one night her mother doesn’t come home, and that’s when everything gets weird.

Now Joshua is her new, and rather reluctant, legal Guardian. Add a hooded stalker and a Central Park battle to the mix and you’ve gone from weird to otherworldly.

Eliyana soon finds herself in a world much larger and more complicated than she’s ever known. A world enslaved by a powerful and vile man. And Eliyana holds the answer to defeating him. How can an ordinary girl, a blemished girl, become a savior when she can’t even save herself?

Unblemished is an original young adult fantasy that will have readers dreaming of Reflections for days to come. I loved the world building in this story - there were Reflections (similar to parallel universes) that some people were able to travel between using Thresholds. This concept was fascinating and I enjoyed learning about it as much as I could. The author does a fantastic job of bringing these elements to life and making them almost seem plausible. I've always been intrigued by the thought of parallel universes, so this was right up my alley and fed my imagination. The Reflections and their inhabitants were all detailed with vivid imagery and descriptions that allowed me to easily picture them in my mind. I loved meeting all of the various people and learning about their "Callings" - abilities they are given early in life. Some were shape shifters, others healers, and some had creepy abilities like causing others pain and paralyzing people just by locking eyes with them. These traits made the characters all the more fascinating and fun to read about. Eliyana was a good main character for the book. She was realistic and easy to connect with right from the beginning. I liked how the author made her "flaw" - the red birthmark on her face and neck - into a powerful symbol in the other Reflections. Some parts of Eliyana's attitude bugged me - it seemed like she was pitying herself a lot and was pretty depressing for most of the book. I understand that it's part of her character and was caused by her hatred for the birthmark and how people treated her because of it. It just felt like she was throwing herself a pity party for most of the story, which did annoy me enough to make it hard to slip inside the story completely. The other aspects of the novel were all well done and were great additions to the book. I definitely recommend this book to fans of fantasy and science fiction!

Once upon a time, SARA ELLA dreamed she would marry a prince (just call her Mrs. Charming) and live in a castle (aka The Plaza Hotel). Though her fairy tale didn’t quite turn out as planned, she did work for Disney—that was an enchanted moment of its own. Now she spends her days throwing living room dance parties for her two princesses and conquering realms of her own imaginings. She believes “Happily Ever After is Never Far Away” for those who put their faith in the King of kings.



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